Do recruiters really care about their candidates?
Spend any time scrolling through LinkedIn and it won't be long before you see a post from a recruiter either proclaiming their own care and support of their candidates or criticising other recruiters for not taking more care of their candidates.
But actions, of course, speak louder than words.
At the time of writing, SKY have just released a documentary about the ill-fated European Super League: a new “elite” competition that was announced back in April 2021, but that then famously fell apart in just a couple of days.
Watching the story retold from multiple angles, what stands out is how quickly it became clear that many football club owners who APPEARED to care about the fans, quickly abandoned them when tempted by a huge financial carrot.
So do recruiters genuinely care about candidates, or does loyalty fall apart when it becomes expedient to do so?
As a recruitment business owner, how would you rate your own business and your own team of recruiters in this area?
One way to find out is to ask yourself how you feel about the concept of giving candidates more agency over how they are presented to the potential employer.
Candidate Delivery Platforms Benefit Everyone
On the surface, candidate delivery platforms benefit everyone.
They allow candidates to be more involved in the process, they make it easier for the employer to make faster and more accurate decisions and they allow the recruiter to craft an image of technological sophistication.
The trade-off, however, from a recruitment business owner's perspective is that they cost money (compared to simply sending CVs to the client via email), and they result in a modest reduction in the control that the recruiter has over the campaign.
Is the upside for the candidates worth that trade-off?
We believe it is. Let's take a closer look at how candidate delivery platforms work and then we'll circle back to this question.
What is a Candidate Delivery Platform?
A candidate delivery platform is an online software application that presents information on the shortlisted candidates.
The information may include video, competency questionnaires, behavioural assessments, and job histories. Typically they include far more information than you would usually find on a CV.
Although the recruiter manages the collation and presentation of the information, the candidate is typically tasked with creating and/or uploading the content.
How do Recruitment Business Owners Use Candidate Delivery Platforms?
In practice, depending on the specific technology being used, the candidate will be invited to create an account and then be tasked with creating or uploading a variety of information.
The recruiter will then review the information, sometimes assisting with the editing and presentation (for example, proofreading competency questionnaires).
Once all of the shortlisted candidates have completed their profiles, the recruiter will give the client access to the shortlist for them to review.
How Do Candidates Benefit from a Candidate Delivery Platform?
The first benefit is almost immediate...
The candidate feels involved in the process.
Once a candidate has handed a recruiter their CV and perhaps had a telephone or face-to-face meeting, it's not unusual for the candidate to quickly feel out of the loop.
Even if the recruiter is diligent, and regularly updates the candidates, it's inevitable they're going to feel like all the important parts are happening behind closed doors. Their involvement is done until they discover whether or not they have an interview with the employer.
A candidate delivery platform, however, involves them in a more meaningful way. They feel empowered to participate in highlighting their most important skills and experience, and they also get to see, more directly, how they will be presented to the client.
It's easy to assume, as the recruiter, that we are the ones with the experience and the expertise to present the candidate in the best possible light. But while that may be true for the most part, the more we get the candidate involved at this stage, the more likely we are to get a greater depth of information that will help their application.
How Does the Employer Benefit From a Candidate Delivery Platform?
The most obvious way is that they get to learn more about the shortlisted candidates.
Additionally, because the information they need is compiled and organised online, the decision over who to call to interview can be made faster and with greater accuracy.
But critically they also get candidates that are, by definition, committed to the process.
Tire-kickers (by which I mean people who agree to be put forward but secretly have next to no interest in moving roles and may simply be curious about what kinds of packages are available) typically don't want to be involved in putting their profile together so they naturally exclude themselves.
By contrast, when a candidate has gone to great lengths to put together a nice intro video, write long, detailed responses to the competency questionnaire, and taken the time to complete the behavioural assessment, by definition they're demonstrating their enthusiasm.
This helps to avoid the classic situation of an employer calling a candidate to interview, and realising within five minutes that the chances of them accepting the role, even if it were to be offered, is next to zero.
That’s just time wasted for everyone.
How Does the Recruiter Benefit from the Candidate Delivery Platform?
The immediate benefits to the recruiter are clear. The candidate delivery platform is attractive to employers, it makes a good selling point and it lends itself well to offering a sophisticated recruitment service that typically commands higher fees (especially in conjunction with retained contracts).
But there's a deeper benefit that brings us back to the recruiter / candidate relationship.
If, as a recruitment business owner, we really care about our candidates, we want them to have a good experience that ultimately places them in a role in which they're extremely happy.
And we can extend this further...
If our candidates have been presented via a candidate delivery platform and have been actively involved in producing their profile, they're much more likely to come away from the process feeling good about us and their experience, EVEN IF they don't get the role.
When a candidate feels like they got to participate in the process and that they were presented in the best possible light, instead of coming away from an unsuccessful application feeling as if they didn't get a fair shake, they're more likely to feel that the outcome was fair.
Ideally they'll come away feeling that this simply wasn't the right role for them, but that they can trust you to help them find something that is a better fit in the future.
And we can extend this STILL further...
Because today's candidates, if well looked after and impressed by the process, are tomorrow's clients.
We've literally seen candidates who failed to get the role but were so impressed by the recruitment process, including the candidate delivery platform, that they recommended the recruiter to their existing company.
Candidates Know the Difference Between Genuine and Faux Interest
When a wealthy businessperson buys a football club, invests hundreds of millions, and helps the team rise to glory, it's easy for the fans to fall in love with the new owner.
But when the owner subsequently signs up the club to an ill-fated European Super League that the fans patently don't want, it quickly becomes clear that the club owners will always prize money over the interest of the fans.
This is a lesson many football clubs have learned the hard way, and the same story is true of many candidates who thought they'd found a recruiter they could trust, only to see themselves ignored or mistreated.
If you're a recruitment business owner who genuinely cares about your candidates – and the fact that you're taking the time to read this suggests that you are – you need to be able to back up that position with action.
And one of the best actions you can take in this regard is to use a candidate delivery platform so your candidates can be fully involved in your recruitment campaigns and so that they can see, directly, that your interest in helping them find a happy career move is genuine.
If you're a recruitment business owner and you'd like a free demonstration of i-intro's Candidate Delivery Platform, book a consultation with me or one of my colleagues HERE.